Friday, July 29, 2005

Paroubek second most popular Czech politician.

After a dead man.

Where's Prof. President?
Sam Beckwith gets a surprisingly frank interview out of the chairman of the foundation who runs Roxy, which if you didn't know, was finally shut down in April:

Q: Who, in particular, is causing you problems in Prague 1?

A: It's the deputy mayor, Mrs. P?íhodová.
The same woman was pushing for a law two years ago that would force all Prague 1 pubs to close at 10 p.m., which I guess would make Prague about as quiet as ... London?

Thursday, July 28, 2005

It's pretty pointless to read any articles about the IRA statement when you could just read the statement itself.

CNN.com - Full text: IRA statement - Jul 28, 2005

Basically they said the war was just and, as of 45 minutes ago, the war is over. It may have been obvious and inevitable for quite some time, but this is a pretty big deal.
You learn something new every day, and some days you're more lucky than others. Whilst conducting research on the Polish energy sector, I came across (in a very roundabout sort of way), the story of Russia's Jewish Autonomous Oblast. It's a bit odd, because I've read quite a bit about the history of the Jewish people, and till now nobody ever told me about this.

In a nutshell, Yevreyskaya avtonomnaya oblast was Stalin's proposed homeland for the Jews. Today it still exists as an administrative entity. It's out near Vladivostok, and a few unconvential thinkers still suggest it as an alternative Jewish homeland. Although only 1.2% of the population is Jewish, there's a Yiddish newspaper and radio station.

Alas, it is now time to continue with my tasks.
The Sun writes that the IRA will formally "surrender" today. We're on the edges of our seats waiting for an announcement that uses that word.

Background here.

Apologies, by the way, for the big gap in blogging, and the light blogging in general for the last I-don't-know-how-long. I've been struggling to secure some income flows (i.e. I've been working), and over the weekend I took a nice little holiday in Amsterdam. Amazingly, I'd never been to Amsterdam before. It was pretty much just like I imagined it.
How about that! According to Draxblog III, Croatia has been declared "the safest country in Europe."

I recall when my sister visited me in Prague several years ago. Maybe about five years ago. She wanted to go on a side-vacation and I suggested Croatia, because there were cheap flights. "Noooo waaayy!" she said. "Why not?" I asked. "There's ethnic conflict there!"

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Former finance minister Svoboda goes to prison

"Svoboda is the first member of a post-communist government to have received a prison sentence."

Amazing, if true.